This is not the baby you’re looking for.

This is not the baby you’re looking for.

As many of you may know by now, science-fiction strongly appeals to me, and thus the SciFi Weekend (later renamed Movie-Mania) at the Leicester Space Centre was one I had looked forward to for sometime. Ever since I blackmailed Caelia into going, after a week night once spent scouring the local 24 hour supermarkets (only to have the exhaust fall off my car shortly after phoning to say I had been successful in my quest).

It was overall a stunningly surreal day, the prelude to which should have forewarned us: We were stopped by a pair of storm troopers (From the 501st Regiment) whilst collecting our tickets for speeding with the buggy!

Exploring the event, we found the signing booth, where Kenny Baker, Warwick Davis, Rusty Goffe, Ian Whyte (who played various incarnation of Predators), and Jeremy Bulloch were chatting with people. As all of them werebusy, we were not going to bother anyone. That is until Jeremy Bulloch (AKA Boba Fett) introduced himself and started chatting with us; before playing with Ada for half an hour. During which, Caelia and I looked on in stunned amazement as the most feared bounty hunter in the Galaxy coo-ed over Ada…

One of the highlights (for me) was the chance hold some of the props from Aliens. Namely the M41A Pulse Rifle and a Motion Tracker, as used by the Colonial Marines. Suffice to say I have since been contemplating a session of Lazer Zone over Xmas with the Aliens soundtrack and smoke machines…

Big Guns 

I was also able to try for size the Gatling Gun from Terminator 2 and Predator, a PPG from Babylon 5, and Rick Deckard’s hand-cannon from Blade Runner.

Ada, it has to be said, took all of this in her stride, and was happily smiling at everyone. While other children four times her age were crying for their mummy’s as soon as the Storm Troopers appeared; Ada would wave at them with a smile on her face (and later trying to bite an Aliens tail). Ada was also accosted by three intrigued Apes (From Planet of the Apes), which elicited a completely unbothered reaction from Ada. Perhaps it was because we were so obviously enjoying ourselves, that we were stopped again by the Storm Troopers, demanding to know if this was our buggy and if we had a licence (they were quickly deterred by the Jedi Mind Trick).

It has to be said that the Garrison UK (who the Storm Troopers were from) had created fantastic costumes for the event. Special mention must go Iron Man, whose armour was awesome (at one point Caelia spotted Warwick Davis saying I’ve starred in a lot of movies, but shaking hands with Iron Man has made my day”). What impressed me most was the genuine enthusiasm that Garrison UK invested into the event, and the reactions they elicited elicited from children – as far they were concerned, these were their heroes. Witnessing the children enthusing about their day afterwards, made me look forward to taking Ada to future events.